Cardio Workout Basics

Cardio workouts are exercises that increase the heart rate. These exercises could be carried out at a stretch for a long period without break. Brisk walking, jogging, running and swimming are popular cardio exercises. Stretching and strengthening workouts are not part of cardio workouts.

Benefits of cardio workouts
Cardio workouts are best way to lose weight without producing adverse side effects. By increasing the metabolic rate of the body, cardio workouts help to shed the excess body weight. Cardio exercises are especially beneficial for the heart and the lungs. They help to strengthen the muscles of the heart, boost blood circulation and improve the function of the lungs.

Cardio workout is a great way of boosting energy. It can fight stress and promotes sleep. Although, cardio equipments such as treadmills are widely used in cardio workouts, you can even effectively exercise without equipments.

Best time for cardio workouts
Best time for cardio workouts is in the morning before you have your breakfast. People tend to lose most fats while exercising in the morning on empty stomach. If you exercise after a meal, your body will primarily burn the carbohydrates you have obtained from your meal, while keeping the fat deposit in your body unharmed. However, before breakfast, when the carbohydrate level in your body is low, your body will burn the fat deposits to meet the excess energy requirement.

Measuring heart beat
The objective of cardio workout is to increase the heart rate. An easy way to measure your heartbeat is to place two fingers on the carotid artery present at the back of your lower jaw. You can easily feel the artery throbbing while exercising.

During cardio workouts, your heartbeat should be between 50 and 75 percent of your maximum heart rate. To calculate the maximum heart rate, men should subtract their age from 220 and women should subtract their age from 226.

Best cardio workouts
Depending upon the condition of your physical health, you should plan your cardio workout. Usually 30 minutes of cardio workout for at least five days a week can improve your fitness. Walking, running, biking and swimming are popular cardio exercises. To reduce boredom, you can combine different types of exercises.